Easy Cinnamon Rolls (from scratch)

These easy cinnamon rolls are perfect for yeast beginners because they only require 1 rise. Each cinnamon roll is extra soft with the most delicious cinnamon swirl!

This cinnamon roll recipe makes classic, home-style cinnamon rolls. They’re fluffy, soft, and topped with vanilla glaze. It’s taken me some time to develop quick cinnamon rolls that maintain all the flavor of traditional overnight cinnamon rolls. I have the winner for you right here and I baked two batches just to be sure. 😉

My BEST ever Cinnamon Rolls - totally from scratch, great beginner recipe! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Yeast Beginners Rejoice!

Do you love homemade cinnamon rolls, but are nervous to bake with yeast? Join the club. I was too! But this recipe changed everything for me. They’re perfect for anyone who wants to learn how to bake with yeast. Unlike overnight cinnamon rolls that require hours of rise time, plus a 2nd rise time after the rolls are shaped, this easy cinnamon rolls recipe only requires 1 rise.

Here’s my #1 tip: I recommend using a strong and dependable yeast. Red Star Platinum Yeast is an instant yeast, which cuts down on rise time. Its careful formula strengthens your dough and makes working with yeast simple. And simple is always good, right?

My BEST ever Cinnamon Rolls - totally from scratch, great beginner recipe! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

How to Make Easy Cinnamon Rolls from Scratch

Bakery style goodness for beginners!

  1. Make the dough: The ingredients are pretty standard: flour, sugar, salt, yeast, water, milk, butter, and 1 egg. Heat the butter, milk, and water together. Next, stir the butter mixture into the dry ingredients, then add the egg. Add about 1/3 cup more flour to get the dough nice and soft. At this point, your dough is ready to knead!
  2. Knead the dough: You can use your mixer or hands to knead the dough. Want to learn more about the process of kneading? I study this helpful guide often. When you’re finished kneading, cover the dough and let it rest for a few minutes so the gluten settles. During this time, get your filling ingredients ready: butter, cinnamon, and sugar.
  3. Shape the cinnamon rolls: Roll the dough out into a 14×8 inch rectangle. Spread the butter on top, then sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Tightly roll up the dough and cut into 11-12 pieces. Place in a greased round pan and get ready to rise.
  4. Rise: Let the shaped rolls rise for 60-90 minutes. Remember, this is the only rise time for the rolls.
  5. Bake: After the cinnamon rolls are nice and puffy, bake until golden brown.

My BEST ever Cinnamon Roll recipe - these fluffy, gooey cinnamon rolls are made from scratch and are a great recipe for beginners!

My BEST ever Cinnamon Roll recipe - these fluffy, gooey cinnamon rolls are made from scratch and are a great recipe for beginners!

The TRICK to Easy Cinnamon Rolls

Let the dough rise in your oven!

Here’s what I do: I heat the oven to 150°F (66°C). Turn the oven off. Place the rolls inside. Leave the oven door cracked open for about 30 minutes, then shut it closed. There, that’s it!

Easy cinnamon rolls recipe

After baking, the rolls are ready for a finishing touch. You can serve with vanilla icing or salted caramel, but I love drenching these easy cinnamon rolls in coffee icing. Simply mix 1 cup of confectioners’ sugar with 2 Tablespoons of strong coffee.

These cinnamon rolls are completely irresistible and they take half the time. If you’re looking for that perfect cinnamon roll recipe, this is the winner.

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Easy Cinnamon Rolls (from scratch)

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 1 hour, 40 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours, 5 minutes
  • Yield: 11-12 rolls
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These easy cinnamon rolls are perfect for yeast beginners because they only require 1 rise. Top with vanilla icing or my favorite coffee icing below.


Ingredients

Rolls

  • 2 and 3/4 cups (345g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 and 1/4 teaspoons Red Star Platinum Yeast or any instant yeast (1 packet)
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) milk
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) water
  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large egg

Filling

  • 3 Tablespoons (45g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar

Icing

  • 1 cup (120g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 23 Tablespoons (30-45ml) strong coffee or milk

Instructions

  1. Make the dough: Whisk the flour, sugar, salt, and yeast together in a large bowl. Set aside.
  2. Combine the milk, water, and butter together in a heatproof bowl. Microwave or use the stove and heat until the butter is melted and the mixture is warm to touch (about 110°F). Pour into the dry ingredients, add the egg, and stir until it forms a soft dough or use your mixer.
  3. On a lightly floured surface using floured hands, knead the dough for 3 minutes. Place in a lightly greased bowl (I use non-stick spray), cover loosely, and let rest for about 10 minutes.
  4. Fill the rolls: After 10 minutes, roll the dough out in a 14×8 inch rectangle. Spread the softened butter on top. Mix together the cinnamon and sugar. Sprinkle it all over the dough. Roll up the dough tightly. Cut into 10-12 even rolls and arrange in a lightly greased 9-inch round cake pan or pie dish.
  5. Rise: Loosely cover the rolls with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm, draft-free environment for 60-90 minutes. See blog post above for my trick to this step!
  6. Bake the rolls: After the rolls have doubled in size, preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Bake for 25-28 minutes until lightly browned. If you notice the tops are getting too brown too quickly, loosely cover the rolls with aluminum foil and continue baking.
  7. Make the icing: Whisk the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, and coffee/milk together. Drizzle or spread over warm rolls.
  8. Cover leftover frosted or unfrosted rolls tightly and store for up to 3 days at room temperature or up to 5 days in the refrigerator.


Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: This dough can be made the night before through step 4. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest in the refrigerator overnight. The next morning, remove from the refrigerator and allow to rise in a warm environment, about 1 hour. Continue with step 6.
  2. Freezing Instructions: Baked rolls can be frozen up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and warm up before enjoying. You can also freeze the unbaked rolls and here’s how: bake the rolls in step 6 for only about 10 minutes at 375°F (191°C). Cool completely, then cover tightly and freeze. To serve, take the rolls out of the freezer and put into the refrigerator a few hours before serving. Then, finish baking them.
If you're new to working with yeast, these soft and fluffy homemade cinnamon rolls are a perfect place to start! Click through for the recipe.
If you're new to working with yeast, these soft and fluffy homemade cinnamon rolls are a perfect place to start! Click through for the recipe.

913 Comments

  1. You had me at easy. Oh, and also at buttery, flaky, and soft. And sweet, and coffee glaze. And last but not least, cinnamon! I lost my self control when I was introduced to an oven so I think we’re all good there!! 🙂

  2. These look wonderful Sally, I love the fact that they only require one rise. Do you normally knead by hand? I think this is what worries me about enriched dough recipes, as I’ve heard they can be difficult to knead without using a mixer (I’m hoping a KitchenAid will be a perfect 30th birthday present! :-))

    1. I don’t alwasy knead by hand, but I strongly prefer it. It’s much more satisfying to knead it myself and then taste it – knowing I did it all by hand!

  3. These look so good! I love that they have only one rise. I have made cinnamon rolls before that have two rises, and they still haven’t looked as light and fluffy as yours! Maybe I will try them out for Mother’s Day.

  4. What a great testament to your baking/blogging/photography prowess that a company will actually compensate you for using their product! You are well on your way, Sally, and it’s entirely deserved! 😀 I can’t believe how beautiful these look…so doughy and delicious. I’m totally with you and your cinnamon fixation :). I actually just made your chocolate-chip muffins, but I used a mix of chocolate chips and cinnamon chips, and my coworkers just loved them! I got recipe requests. Your fame spreads… 😉

    1. Thanks Caley! I’m happy to be working with Red Star. Your cinnamon/chocolate chip muffins sound SO good. I need to get my hands on some cinnamon chips ASAP.

  5. Oh Sally, these look absolutely decadent! I love cinnamon rolls. I have a go-to recipe but it takes wayyy too much time to make. I’m thinking this might be what I have been looking for all my life!

  6. I’ll have to give these a try…though I swore off yeast after my last attempt.
    I’ve so far tried to do both the raspberry swirl and the orange sweet rolls, but both failed miserably. 🙁
    I think i’m doing something wrong with the yeast. My dough doesn’t double in size in the bowl like it’s supposed to. It doesn’t change at all.

    1. Lisa, do you use Red Star Platinum yeast? It’s available in the baking aisle with the other yeast. It is fail-proof.

      1. The first time I just used a cheap generic, but yes, the second time I tried I actually bought the Red Star since I’ve seen you talk about it so much. My dough didn’t change at all in the bowl. Perhaps I just picked up a bad package or something.

  7. Easier than your other sweet rolls?! That’s dangerous for me. I love me some cinnamon rolls. I love that it makes a relatively small batch and they look so soft and fluffy! I never would have thought of a coffee glaze. Now I have to decide which to try first, these, or the caramel apple!

  8. Hello!
    I was wondering if it is possible to make these ahead of time? I just never seem to make the time in the morning so if I could make them the night before, refrigerate then bake in the morning that’d be ideal? Thank you!

      1. So…you can’t hold the raw dough overnight in the fridge? And then bake in the morning? That is what I think the original question was.

      2. As noted in the recipe– Overnight: The dough may be made the night before through step 4. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in the refrigerator overnight. The next morning, remove from the refrigerator and let rise, about 1 hour.

  9. I just made homemade cinnamon rolls today, too. They are the ultimate #1 comfort food in my book! I wish I would have thought of a coffee glaze!

  10. I just might have to cheat on my favorite cinnamon roll recipe to try these. Funny, I was gong to make some this weekend! I loved your tip about placing them in the 200 degree oven … Smart! Your pic letting us peek inside the roll was cruel! For some reason, cakes, pies, etc.don’t pose the self control problem cinnamon rolls do – I cannot stop eating them. Just can’t. And I am very happy doing it!

  11. I’ve been waiting for this recipe ever since you posted photos of these beauties on Instagram, Sally! A cinnamon that requires only one rising time is amazing and I love the idea of a coffee glaze 🙂 My husband doesn’t really like cinnamon rolls (I KNOW…) so I’m going to save this recipe for a girls’ brunch or eat the entire pan myself… I think I could handle that!

  12. Aw yum!! Sally, you’ve done it again… these rolls look so soft, moist, flavourful and delicious! I love cinnamon rolls. The first time I tried them was on a holiday to Hawaii when I was sixteen… I saw this ‘Cinnabon’ stall and had to try them! I was hooked. I ate so many in one week 😉 The phenomenon still hasn’t hit Australia. We have ‘cinnamon scrolls’ which are like bread-ish scrools made with normal sweet bread dough. Nothing like your version. Yum! Thanks for sharing. Can’t wait to bake these!!! x

    1. I love Cinnabon!! And these are just like them. You have to try them! And if you do, let me know how you like them.

  13. I almost never make recipes that call for rolling out dough because I’m horrible at it. I need a lesson. These look so good I may attempt it!

    1. It’s not too tough with a rolling pin, Kim. Just roll it into a rectangle, it takes a couple minutes to get it right.

  14. Sally, I’ve tried your other yeast dough recipes….all delish…so, now I ask you…do you have a favorite?

    1. It would be hard to choose. 🙂 I love the raspberry and orange rolls so much. But these are just a classic, wonderful recipe to enjoy as well.

  15. Holy yum!! Sally you have done it again!! My little siblings would go CRAZY for these! They love the pillsbury ones and these look way better!! YUM!
    I love working with Red Star Yeast, I think it is one of the best!

  16. Ok the fact that we both posted Red Star and bread recipes today…and I made another yeast recipe that’s going out next week: sweet rolls baked in the EXACT pie plate you used. And I used 2.5 c flour and the same amt of sugar, 1 egg, and pretty much yep, we were on the same wavelength. I was devouring the sweet rolls over the weekend while you were devouring yours. Girl. Crazy!!!! Oh and it’s an adaptation of the F&W raspberry rolls. Very loosely adapted though.

    They are beautiful, Sally. The photos are stunning, your prettiest roll pics ever. That new camera is a stunner! And one rise. Truly genius. Pinned. And these are going to be a hot ticket! I know it!

  17. Ohhh my… I am a cinnamon roll ADDICT and these look amazing! I usually leave the icing off of mine to maximize the cinnamon goodness (it’s my favorite spice, after all!), and then I feel justified in eating three. Or four. All in one sitting.

    I know I have a problem, but… I’m not willing to fix it yet. 😉

    1. Hi Gina – these are super soft. As soft as any previous double rise rolls I’ve made. Keep in mind that you must use Platinum Red Star yeast for the quick rise time.

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